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French PM attends Iftar at Paris Grand Mosque

France's prime minister Francois Fillon has attended the Muslim Iftar meal at the Paris Grand Mosque to mark the end of the daily Ramadan fast.

French PM attends Iftar at Paris Grand Mosque
France's prime minister Francois Fillon has attended the Muslim Iftar meal at the Paris Grand Mosque to mark the end of the daily Ramadan fast.

"I hope mosques will continue to be built all over France that put an end to the Islam of garages and basements," he said.

"All of you gathered here believe in dialogue and that things are changing for Muslims in France."

"As France's president Nicolas Sarkozy desires, a new French Islam is being built," Fillon told his host, Paris Grand Mosque director Dalil Boubakeur, who is also president of the French Council of the Muslim Faith Muslim (CFCM).

The CFCM was set up in 2003 by the French government as an official dialogue partner.

Fillon said that the French Foundation for the Works of Islam is to work with the state savings bank to fund "the building and renovation of places of worship"with "donations from the faithful and friends of French Islam."

Many imams needed to improve their mastery of French, Fillou stated. He also hoped more Muslims cemeteries would be built to address the current shortage.

"To have to return to one's native soil because there is no room for you to be buried in France is a hateful form of discrimination," he said.

Ramadan began in France last Thursday. It is one of the five Muslim duties, together with prayer five times a day, profession of the faith, alms and pilgrimage to Mecca.

AKI
Last Mod: 20 Eylül 2007, 16:07
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